Italian film critic and academic Beatrice Fiorentino has been appointed new general delegate of the Venice Film Festival’s Critics’ Week, the Lido’s independently run section dedicated to promising first works from around the world.

Fiorentino — who was previously a member of the section’s selection committee — had been widely expected to replace her predecessor Giona Nazzaro, who stepped down recently ending a five-year stint at the section’s helm after being appointed artistic director of the Locarno Film Festival.

“The National Union of Italian Film Critics is very happy with the work done by Giona Nazzaro in the last few years,” said Franco Montini, president of the org that runs the section. In a statement, he went on to note that “the appointment of Beatrice Fiorentino, his closest collaborator, has the intent of giving continuity to the project.”

During his tenure, Nazzaro and his team added luster to the Venice Critics’ Week by making bold choices such as this year’s opener, Indian animation “Bombay Rose,” directed by Gitanjali Rao, and Turkish director Azra Deniz Okyay’s gentrification-themed drama “Ghosts,” which won the section in September, to cite some recent examples. In general, they’ve been working year-round to take the pulse of new and diverse voices and cast a wide net around the world.

Fiorentino is a film studies graduate at the University of Trieste. Besides having worked as a film professor she is a freelance journalist and film critic for a host of Italian publications, including Il Manifesto, Il Piccolo, Cinecittà News and 8 ½.

In 2014, Fiorentino received the Akai Award for “Best Film Critic” at the 71st Venice International Film Festival. She is a member of the European Film Academy.

“I take on this challenge proudly and with great enthusiasm, aware of the responsibility that was entrusted on me,” Fiorentino said in a statement.

“Together with the selection committee and the new programming team, we will work in continuity with the path of those who preceded us,” she added.

The Venice Critics’ Week’s new programming team comprises Alessandro Gropplero and Suomi Sponton, both of whom are known for their work in various prominent guises at Udine’s Far East Festival, along with Anette Dujisin-Muharay, who was already on the team.